Emotional Zverev reveals why his parents didn’t make the trip to US

Alexander Zverev said his parents couldn't accompany him during his sensational run to the US Open final because they had tested positive for Coronavirus

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Alexander Zverev

US Open finalist Alexander Zverev revealed that his parents, Alexander Sr and Irina, could not come to New York with him as they had tested positive for Coronavirus.

His parents are former professional players and were the ones that got him and his older brother, Mischa Zverev, started in tennis. They usually travel with him to tournaments and his father is still one of his official coaches.

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But neither of them could make the trip to New York and see their son play his first Grand Slam final.

“They were there with me for every tournament. Unfortunately my dad and mother tested positive (for COVID-19) before the tournament and couldn’t have gone with me,” said Zverev, tearing up at the presentation ceremony after a tough 2-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (6) defeat to Dominic Thiem in the US Open final on Sunday evening.

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“I miss them. This is tough. I’m sure they’re at home and proud. I hope I can bring the trophy to them (one day).”

At the post-match press-conference, the 23-year-old added that his parents had recovered.

“They’re fine,” the German said. “They’re actually negative already. That’s the reason they didn’t come here. But, yeah, I mean, look, losing 7-6 in the fifth after being two sets to love and a break up is not easy.

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“At the speech, I mean, I got emotional. I couldn’t put two words together. I don’t actually remember what I said. It was a difficult moment for me.”

Playing in his first major final, Zverev did not look overawed by the occasion as he blazed into a two-set lead against Thiem. But the cracks in his game started opening up after conceding a break of serve in the third set.

 

With the match lasting for just over four hours, both the players seemed to be struggling physically in the closing stages.

Though the 6’6 Zverev served for the championship at 5-3 in the fifth set, his serve had faded considerably by the decider and the German made two doubles faults in the tie-breaker.

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“I was cramping in the tiebreaker really,” he said. “My left quad was cramping, I couldn’t push off anymore. I couldn’t actually hit the first serve anymore. So, yeah, that was the reason.”

“I was super close to being a Grand Slam champion. I was a few games away, a few points away. What upset me the most is not the third set or something like that, it’s the fifth set. I had a lot of chances and didn’t use them,” he explained.

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“I’m 23 years old. I don’t think it’s my last chance. I do believe that I will be a Grand Slam champion at some point.”

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